PM Modi wraps up his South Africa visit; leaves for Greece

Johannesburg:┬áPrime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday concluded a “very productive” visit to South Africa during which he attended the “historic” 15th BRICS Summit and held bilateral meetings with several world leaders to further cement India’s relations with those countries.

Modi arrived in South Africa on Tuesday for the first in-person BRICS Summit after three consecutive years of virtual meetings because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

“PM @narendramodi wraps up a fruitful visit to South Africa that launched a new chapter in the BRICS journey. PM now emplanes for Greece for engagements with an important Mediterranean partner,” Spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs Arindam Bagchi posted on X.

“My visit to South Africa was a very productive one. The BRICS Summit was fruitful and historic as we welcomed new countries to this forum. We will keep working together for global good. My gratitude to President @CyrilRamaphosa, the people and Government of South Africa for their hospitality,” Modi posted on X.

On Tuesday, Modi attended the Leaders’ Retreat along with his counterparts from China, South Africa and Brazil. Russia was represented by Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

He held a bilateral meeting with South African President Cyril Ramaphosa on Wednesday during which they reviewed the progress made in bilateral ties and exchanged views on regional and multilateral issues.

He held a series of bilateral meetings with several world leaders, including presidents of Iran, Senegal and Mozambique, on the margins of the BRICS Summit on Thursday.

Prime Minister Modi also conveyed to Chinese President Xi Jinping India’s concerns on the “unresolved” issues along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh during a conversation on the sidelines of the BRICS summit.

The BRICS on Thursday decided to admit Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates as full members of the grouping.

With the entry of the six countries, the total number of members in the grouping will reach 11 from the current five.

Modi will visit Athens on Friday at the invitation of his Greek counterpart Kyriakos Mitsotakis.

Modi’s visit to Athens assumed significance as it would be the first prime ministerial visit from India since then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi visited Greece in September 1983.